CTC Forum - Touring & Expedition

Syndicate content
Discussion boards hosted by CTC, the national cycling charity
Updated: 14 min 6 sec ago

Re: Do I need front panniers for touring?

27 August 2014 - 8:10am
If it works then don't fix it, why carry more?

Re: Do I need front panniers for touring?

27 August 2014 - 7:54am
I am 3 months into a 4 month bike tour across Europe with only rear panniers, a rack bag (20L) and a bar bag. My girlfriend has exactly the same bags and between us we are carrying a tent, sleeping equipment, stove, gas, clothes, a tablet, etc and still have room for food. What has helped is choosing small/compact/ultralight stuff: down bags, air mats that roll up very small, a nestable pot/bowls/mugs. Otherwise just one or two of these items could fill an entire pannier.

We have met plenty of bike tourists on much shorter trips with front panniers and I am often envious of them at camp as they have lots of luxuries but the next day when we are riding up hills I am glad we only have a small amount of stuff! Of course if you are riding through Africa or the Middle East and need to carry lots of spares they may be essential but for trips where you are never far from civilisation I think they just slow you down.

So if it all fits onto the back then don't bother with front panniers. Just the rack and bags weigh around 2kg and that's without anything inside.

Our bikes are a bit rear heavy and sometimes lifting the front wheels when pushing causes the bike to tip up but I've had no handling issues whilst riding in 4500km.

Re: Do I need front panniers for touring?

26 August 2014 - 11:38pm
It may be but you still have to compare like with like. If cooking is your thing, then you will have to carry more than people who don't cook. Travelling light on a bicycle is unarguably a good thing: what is arguable is whether the same degree of comfort and utillity can be achieved with less stuff.

We also assume that cycle campers are moving on and wish to obtain high mileages (in which case lightness is crucial). But some people may be happy with lower mileages and appreciate the greater comfort - I know I do.

Re: Touring bike alternatives?

26 August 2014 - 11:16pm
Great stuff. Couldn't resist buying the 'Janapar' DVD.

Re: Advice on full touring frame build please..

26 August 2014 - 11:13pm
If you are having bar-end (gear) levers, then full-size Vee brakes (and compatible drop bar brake levers) is a no-brainer.

Re: Do I need front panniers for touring?

26 August 2014 - 10:59pm
Me neither, such a wasteful exercise.

Re: Do I need front panniers for touring?

26 August 2014 - 10:49pm
bikes4two wrote:This chap is often quoted in taking ultra-light cycle camping to the extreme, but for new readers have a look here

He says he doesn't use cooking equipment.

Re: Do I need front panniers for touring?

26 August 2014 - 10:23pm
temp.jpg

Answer, no, not in my opinion (for all the reasons already mentioned) unless (ha ha) you're touring on a tandem or going around the world/very long trip where you might need a lot of kit.

This chap is often quoted in taking ultra-light cycle camping to the extreme, but for new readers have a look here

Re: Burgundy, Holland or Germany?

26 August 2014 - 10:08pm
In May I followed Edward Enfield's book a little over halfway to the Med (made it to Cluny). I would recommend you get a train from Paris as near to Tonerre as possible. The canal path is excellent from there. I followed it to Pont d'Ouche and from there took direct (very hilly) route to Beaune. Next time I will continue along canal towards Dijon.
Some good photos on here:
http://experiencefrancebybike.com/bicyc ... uro-a-day/

Re: Touring bike alternatives?

26 August 2014 - 9:43pm
Did you read about his tour with it? http://tomsbiketrip.com/how-far-can-you ... ring-bike/

I like his philosophy. We get too obsessed with gear sometimes.

Re: Budapest to Black Sea...EV6

26 August 2014 - 9:16pm
albal1 wrote:St Nazaire - Mulhouse was 643 miles. Wien - 1335 miles. And to Budapest - 1550 miles. Hope that helps.

Thank you, spot on.

Re: Touring bike alternatives?

26 August 2014 - 8:40pm
peckham wrote:This person got together his touring bike very cheaply!
http://tomsbiketrip.com/how-to-go-cycle ... ks-part-1/

I enjoyed reading that!

Re: Descent bike shop in Taunton?

26 August 2014 - 8:40pm
AND... Touring specialists SJS cycles up the road in Bridgwater ( closed @ weekends ) but a pleasant cycle from Taunton up the Bridgwater Canal.

Re: Burgundy, Holland or Germany?

26 August 2014 - 3:38pm
Done both these countries recently.

Burgundy is a big place, mostly agricultural, the wine growing area south of Dijon is only a small part.
I went on bike bus to Auxerre and was picked up in Beaune. Think of it as one big farm of 36000 sq kilometres with 9000 sq km of forests.

I must say Germany is a wonderful place for cycling much more varied than Burgundy and for me I prefer Germany even taking into account the weather risk. But 3 weeks ago I was cycling in North Rhine in 37 degrees.

Getting to Germany and back is straightforward but I allow a travelling day by train both ways to and from Hoek. The German tourist Office has a wonderful website fro cycling.

http://www.germany.travel/en/leisure-an ... cling.html.

John

Re: Descent bike shop in Taunton?

26 August 2014 - 2:19pm
Ah. I should have caveated my post with the fact that the bicycle chain workshop can be very busy and they don't squeeze jobs it. Not a problem for me, but I can see this would be a huge one for you. As said first I've heard good things about Ralph colemans as well so that's good.

Re: Descent bike shop in Taunton?

26 August 2014 - 2:00pm
Well that was an interesting experience. Thanks for you reponses.
I went to Bicycle Chain first. Explained that we were in the middle of a six month tour and just passing through and that I needed a new chain and rear casette fitting. The assistant showed absolutely not a flicker of interest in our story, looked up his workshop schedule and said we can do it a week on Thursday. Obviously that isn't much use to us as I explained but he wasn't interested. Then went to Ralph Colman's where I had a little bit of difficulty getting their new boy/holiday lad or whatever he was to understand what I wanted but once over that they were great. The mechanic said that really he couldn't do it until Friday but he would do his best to get it ready by Thursday. Can't ask for much more than that so no points to Bicycle Chain and nine out of ten to Ralph Colman.

Re: Panniers etc on Ferries & how to have safe panniers

26 August 2014 - 1:14pm
PrinterJohn wrote:If you feel you have to lock you bike up, please do not lock your bike with mine under it! I like to get off the ferry promptly and have in the past had to wait for people who have locked their bike up with mine behind it. Cheers John
Which bike is yours ?

Re: Descent bike shop in Taunton?

26 August 2014 - 10:37am
The Bicycle Chain is the one I use all the time, its just round the corner from my work and I've always had decent service from them. They will also price match if you need to get something.

Other bike shops in Taunton are:
Ralph Colemans
Kings Cycles - Both I have heard good things about but never used them
ND Cycles - not been in or heard anything about
Nationwide E-bikes - probably not your bag
On your bike - mainly bike recycling, but may be able to pick up parts bargains.
Also Halfords and Go Outdoors....

Theres a few more shops in the greater area as well (Wellington and Bridgwater). I can give a full run down if you want!

Descent bike shop in Taunton?

26 August 2014 - 10:21am
We are taking a break on our round Britain cycle tour. We are staying with my sister in Taunton for a week and I could do with changing the chain and rear casette. Can anybody recommend where to go?

Thanks

Re: Advice on full touring frame build please..

26 August 2014 - 1:36am
beardy wrote:It is always a compromise.
some more compromises to consider...

full size V brakes are good stoppers, but require compatible levers, which means no STI or Ergo in the future.

Cable discs such as BB7 road are good stoppers and allow unlimited clearance (or even switching wheels to 26"), but require that the framebuilder agrees to putting on stronger and heavier fork blades and (maybe) chainstay. Chainstay mounted rear allows best rack compatibility, and front-of-LH-fork-blade front mounting is safer and removed the need for lawyer lips, but consider rack compatibility beforehand. There can be overheating problems if you descend a big col slowly rather than adopt a plummet and brake hard at intervals style.

Drum brakes can be good stoppers and allow unlimited clearance etc, but are comparatively heavy.

Archive

  • Patron: Her Majesty The Queen
  • President: Jon Snow
  • Chief Executive: Paul Tuohy
  • Cyclists' Touring Club (CTC): A company limited by guarantee, registered in England no.25185. Registered as a charity in England and Wales No 1147607 and in Scotland No SC042541

 

Terms and Conditions